Pause for poetry: Michael Hawkes /19

Instructions to a Police Cadet

A poem by Michael Hawkes

You’re paid to don this padded suit
this helmet and this mask,
then take this baton, shield and mace
and apply them in your task.

There’s your neighbour’s daughter
and another neighbour’s son,
your job is now to beat them down
until the clean-up’s done.

You can smash her pretty face,
you can kick him in the guts,
you must give them all you’ve got
without the ifs and buts.

Toss your hand grenades of gas,
spray them with your mace,
don’t let any of them pass
or you’ll have the chief to face.

When the avenue is cleared
and you’ve earned your daily pay
you may go home to your kids
to relax a bit and play.

13/10/20 – Hawkes

2021 begins poetically at the Centre des arts de Stanstead

Centre des Arts de Stanstead logo -


Centre des arts de Stanstead presents its first reading for the new year, featuring poets Laure Morali and Isabelle Miron on Saturday, January 16 at 2 pm. Well-known broadcaster, formerly with CBC-Radio and currently a programmer with Blue Metropolis Literary Festival, Shelley Pomerance, is the new host of the poetry series.

Everyone is invited to join the two poets on Zoom by visiting the Facebook page of Le Centre des arts de Stanstead where they will find the link to participate. For more information, please contact Shelley Pomerance at

Feature image: 2C2K Photography via
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Michael Hawkes -

Michael Hawkes is an 80-year-old survivor of all the world’s wars. He learned (and loved to rhyme) by torturing the hymns he had to sing at school. A retired West Coast fisherman living in Montreal since 2013, he is an unschooled Grandpa Moses writing an average of five poems every week.

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